From the Chair

Dear friends,
This edition of Bolder Voices is an opportunity to learn about our most recent faculty addition, Dr. Robert Wyrod. As you will see, his work makes major advances in our understanding of AIDS in Africa through the lens of masculinity. We extend our congratulations to class of 1998 graduate Kristi Tredway for completing her PhD in Physical Cultural Studies from the University of Maryland. I think you will enjoy learning more about her fascinating journey in the article below.

We also have enjoyed several exciting visits this semester. Associate Professor Christina Bejarano from the Political Science Department at the University of Kansas recently gave a very timely talk on Latinos/Latinas and U.S. Politics. And we had a fantastic visit by Vivienne Armstrong and CU alum Louise Young, who came at the invitation of LGBTQ Studies to tell us their story of love and activism on National Coming Out Day 2016! We thank all those who have donated to WGST for your help in bringing such engaging speakers and other learning and research opportunities to our department.

Lorraine Bayard de Volo
Chair & Associate Professor, Women and Gender Studies


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Faculty Profile: Dr. Robert Wyrod

WyrodWe are pleased to introduce our newest faculty member, Dr. Robert Wyrod, assistant professor of women and gender studies and international affairs. Wyrod is a sociologist who studies gender, sexuality, and social change in the developing world. He received his PhD from the University of Chicago, then completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the Center for AIDS Prevention Studies at UC San Francisco before joining the faculty at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. His recently published book, AIDS and Masculinity in the African City: Privilege, Inequality, and Modern Manhood (University of California Press, July 2016), is the first to examine how the AIDS epidemic has shaped masculinity in urban Africa, and is based on a decade of fieldwork in a slum community in Kampala, Uganda.

For several years before beginning work on his PhD, Wyrod worked as a science news producer for a daily Japanese news program in New York City, and was involved with independent film, video production, and video activism. It was through his video activism that he was introduced to several filmmakers who were also doctoral candidates in sociology, leading him back to graduate school where he incorporated his filmmaking into his ethnographic research.

While living in New York City, Wyrod was also involved in activism in the Puerto Rican community in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, working with a vibrant community-based organization, Musica Against Drugs, which addressed AIDS among drug users. Wyrod notes, “this experience showed me how racism, economic inequality, and AIDS all intersected.” After visiting his brother in Guinea, West Africa, who was there working as a Peace Corps volunteer, Wyrod first came to appreciate how devastating AIDS was in many parts of Africa. "This led me to focus on AIDS in Africa for my PhD research, and to Uganda because that country was seen as the great African success story in combating AIDS. I was curious to learn if this success was tied to deeper social transformations in gender relations, especially men’s longstanding privileges and power in sexual relationships with women. To my surprise, and frankly disappointment, I found that such sexual privileges had been largely unchallenged by the long-standing AIDS epidemic. In my book, I try to explain why that has been the case in Uganda, and in sub-Saharan Africa more generally.” read more...


Alumna Update: Kristi Tredway, PhD

Dr. Tredway In May 2016, I completed the requirements for a PhD from the University of Maryland in the Physical Cultural Studies program of the Department of Kinesiology. I also completed graduate certificates in both Women’s Studies and Critical Theory. My dissertation was an analysis of the lineage of social activism in women’s professional tennis since 1968, the year tennis became “open.” My doctoral work, then, made my life come full circle. Having just closed the circle, I have been thinking of its beginning.

I arrived at CU as a mixed American Indian and white, raised in the working-class, lesbian, first-generation college student in 1994. To my advantage, I had been a professional tennis player for 4½ years prior to beginning my college journey. In fact, when I blew out my knee which ended my career, Rosie Casals, my coach at the time (and an inductee into the International Tennis Hall of Fame) told me to go to college until I figured out what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. College, since I now had a middle-class habitus from professional tennis, actually seemed like a viable option. Alison Jaggar, my undergraduate professor and mentor (and, for so long, my academic mom), is the reason that I majored in Women Studies (as it was called then) and Philosophy at the University of Colorado, as she holds a joint appointment in both departments. My thinking still shows the influence of Jaggar’s background in analytic philosophy where logic is key. I developed my theoretical understanding of, primarily, sex, gender, sexuality, and, to a lesser extent, race, most specifically in regards to African American social and political thought. Back then, my understanding lacked a proper intersectional analysis and these categories remained, for the most part, discrete. I became an activist for both the Lesbian Avengers in Denver and Oyate, the student group for American Indians at CU, though these activist selves were also separate. I also became an activist for helping lead the Women Studies students through the battle of becoming a distinct department, ensuring that we remained on the same page as the faculty. (My diploma is blank where the major should be written – since I graduated after approval of the department but before its official start date – which I enjoy as a constant reminder of this time of activism.) Attending the multiple meetings of the regents, Jaggar would tell us to look like we were graduates of British finishing school, a look that I feel will continue to be out of my grasp. At this time, though, I was still avoiding any discussion about a major component of myself: my professional tennis career.

Though I did not fully understand it at the time, Jaggar saw my political activism – which did have ill effects on my coursework and, thus, my work in her classes – as an equally important facet of my education as my learning in the classroom. Indeed, it was Jaggar’s phone number written in sharpie on my arm whenever I was involved in social activism with the Lesbian Avengers and other protests in Denver; she would be my one phone call if I were arrested, though she made it very clear that if I was arrested for having been violent in any way, I was on my own because…feminist ethics. Thus, Jaggar cultivated, yet kept in check, the importance for the relationality of theory and action in feminist work, an understanding that I still carry with me. read more...

Fall 2016 Events

Helen Louise Young & Vivienne Armstrong:
A CU Love Story

Viv & Louise at CU

Louise & Vivienne at CU Boulder

Tuesday, October 11, 2016
4:00-5:00pm • Hazel Gates Woodruff Cottage 

In celebration of National Coming Out Day, we invited Vivienne Armstrong, MSN, RN & Louise Young, Ph.D. to present their story. Since they met at CU Boulder in 1971, Vivienne and Louise have been important contributors in the movement for LGBT rights, through their work in politics and healthcare, and activism surrounding workplace and marriage equality. “We are part of a generation that created change. Viv and I turn 69 this year and it’s a time of introspection for us. We saw a need and wanted to make a difference. We believe we have, and in turn have been changed ourselves. It’s been a marvelous journey.” Thanks to all who joined us for a fascinating first-hand account of their journey so far, a living history of the struggle towards full LGBT rights and equality in the U.S.

Viv & Louise

Louise & Vivienne met with our students and faculty at a reception following their presentation.



Growing Latina Influence
on U.S. Politics

Christina E. Bejarano
Associate Professor of Political Science, University of Kansas
Wednesday, October 19, 2016
4:30-6:00pm • Hazel Gates Woodruff Cottage

Christina E. Bejarano (Ph.D. University of Iowa) is an Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Kansas.  Her research and teaching interests are in American politics, in particular the areas of gender, race/ethnicity, and political behavior.  She is particularly interested in studying the conditions under which racial/ethnic minorities and women successfully compete for U.S. electoral office, which is reflected in her book, The Latina Advantage: Gender, Race, and Political Success (University of Texas Press, 2013).  Her work also focuses on how racial/ethnic minorities and women can shape or influence the current electoral environment, which is reflected in her book, The Latino Gender Gap in U.S. Politics  (Routledge Press, 2014).  Professor Bejarano has also written journal articles for publication in Political Research Quarterly and Politics & Gender.

Dr. Bejarano joined us on Wednesday, October 19th for a fascinating discussion of the political influence of Latinos in electoral politics, especially the growing gender differences for Latinas in their political attitudes and participation rates.  Latinas are wielding increased political influence in their communities, at the ballot box, as political candidates, and in leading various Latino national organizations.  As a result, Latino political organizations and the major political parties are devising strategies to highlight Latinas’ role as catalysts of political change in the Latino community.  


Book Release Reception
AIDS and Masculinity in the African City:
Privilege, Inequality, and Modern Manhood

Friday, November 4, 2016
3:00-4:30pm • Hazel Gates Woodruff Cottage 

AIDS and MasculinityJoin us to celebrate the release of Dr. Robert Wyrod's new book, AIDS and Masculinity in the African City: Privilege, Inequality, and Modern Manhood, published by the University of California Press. 

Mark Hunter, author of Love in the Time of AIDS: Inequality, Gender, and Rights in South Africa, writes that "AIDS and Masculinity in the African City offers compelling new insights into AIDS in Uganda—one of the world’s most talked-about success stories. Anthropologists, gender scholars, and public health practitioners should read Wyrod’s important account of how AIDS reshapes—but also reproduces—dominant masculinities.”

WGST FacultyWomen & Gender Studies Faculty 2016 (clockwise from top left)
Celeste Montoya, Lorraine Bayard de Volo (chair), Robert Buffington, Janet Jacobs, Sam Bullington, Alison Jaggar, Emmanuel David, Deepti Misri, Robert Wyrod
Bolder Voices:
Women and Gender Studies Newsletter

Women and Gender Studies
University of Colorado Boulder
246 UCB | Boulder, CO 80309-0246
Phone: (303) 492-8923 | Fax: (303) 492-2549